General Question

augustlan's avatar

Any great ideas for a Sweet 16 party?

Asked by augustlan (46577 points ) April 27th, 2010

My oldest daughter, Fly, will be turning 16 very soon. She wants to have a great party, but is all out of ideas. There will be about 20 guests around her age, and funds are somewhat limited.

Some things about her: She’s a brainiac and mature for her age; she’s into reading, fashion, the internet, and movies; her favorite TV shows include House, Fringe, Gilmore Girls, Planet Earth and some kind of criminal/law show that I’ve forgotten the name of; and she’s currently learning how to drive.

Some of the rejected ideas include: pool party (she’s had many, and is over it), skating, going to DC (transportation issues), just a regular party in a rented place, and a Harry Potter costume deal (she really wanted to do this, but a good friend also wanted to do it, so she’s being the bigger person).

Please give us your most creative ideas to make this birthday really special for her. Thanks!

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40 Answers

talljasperman's avatar

Rent a limo or other awesome car and let her drive

shpadoinkle_sue's avatar

Maybe a murder mystery type of party. Different time period or something like that.

Vunessuh's avatar

You could have a scavenger hunt.
You could have a karaoke sleepover.
You could set something up at a free location like the park and have music, food, games, set up a volleyball court, etc.
If she’s into parties with a theme, she could have a red carpet/Hollywood party and everyone dresses up as a celebrity.
Another themed party could be a 60’s, 70’s or 80’s party.

Good luck and I hope you all have fun.

liminal's avatar

Spa and photo shoot party.

Everybody comes dressed in pj’s and brings an outfit to change into. There could be stations for doing facials, pedicures, hair, spots for lounging and sipping fun drinks from the ’drink bar’, etc… Hire someone who does chair massage (like one you would find at Whole Foods). Have someone with a nice camera taking pictures at a designated spot with a cool back-drop, but also put disposable cameras all over the place for candid ‘in process’ shots.

rebbel's avatar

Do as Niles did, in this episode of Frasier.
Everyone who’s attending the party comes as a character from literature.

augustlan's avatar

You guys are full of great ideas! Keep them coming. :D

augustlan's avatar

Hahaha… just noticed the last “sibling” over there =======>
Apparently, I suck at this.

rebbel's avatar

@augustlan just noticed the last “sibling” over there =======>
So, see you again next year? ;-)

liminal's avatar

@augustlan that is funny!

Do you live near a body of water? Sometime parks and beaches have bonfire areas that are cheap to reserve.

jrpowell's avatar

Buy a ton of crap from the local Salvation Army or your equivalent. Have a fashion show with stuff you bought. Let them run around to pick out things to make a outfit from stuff from your collection. And everyone keeps what they picked.

Then you can judge who did the best with the trash heap. Set a limit on items picked. For example: you can only grab one dress.

edit :: And you can play games to see the order that people go in and how long they get to pick the clothes. I’m thinking Minute To Win It games.

You could kill ten hours with that stuff.

jeanmay's avatar

You could have a red party (or any other colour), with lots of red food and drink and all guests must wear/bring something red. Or maybe an initial party where everyone dresses as something beginning with the first letter of your daughter’s name. A bad taste party; no smart-dressers allowed. Or if you wanted to do a day out, find a local conservation volunteer group and go and plant trees for the day; memorable and lasting!

BoBo1946's avatar

@augustlan cut and pasted this one..Called, “Going Green At 16!”

I’m doing this for my daughter’s sixteenth b-day. She loves the peace, love, ect. So we’re having a dance featuring it all! We’re having a dance at our local community building. The invites say go green i’m turning 16!” All guests are asked to wear green. They are also asked to bring old coats or clothes for our area homeless shelter. This replaces bringing gifts. The decorations are going to be a mix of 60’s and recycling. 2 liter pop bottles can be cut from bottom up going around to make a spiral. When hung they’re really cool! The bottom of them is going to be used for dips. Thick paper plates are going to be hung for peace signs. I’m taking wire and making a 3 ft. peace sign heart and 16 and covering the peace in multi lights heart in red and 16 in purple. These are going to hang in the middle along with strands of lights around the ceiling. Beads will be hung in the entrance and bathroom doorways. Her party is the night before her b-day so at midnight when she turns 16 two large trashbags of balloons hanging from the ceiling will be opened when we start singing happpy b-day. The tables are going to be covered with newspaper and centerpieces are 2 liter bottles with baby t-shirts on them. I’m tye dyeing them first with food coloring. Fake daisies are going in the top of each one. Also on the tables will be bowls of granola for that hippie feel! Fondue is going to be the featured food. 3 tables with different kinds of cheese and one chocolate. Drinks are pop or mixes. Grenadine and gingerale or squirt with frozen fruit will be our “lava lamps”. There will also be a station with face paints for the kids to “decorate” themselves with peace and love. In the corner will be a fake tree with a sign that says “hug me”. Cute huh?! The music is going to be done by a local college kid in desperate need of money. Cheap! My daughter doesn’t know about the party either! She thinks we’re going out to eat at a fancy restraunt so she’s going to be all decked out. Her BFF’s are helping with it all. Should be fun!!”

chels's avatar

What about an Alice in Wonderland themed party? There’s lots of cute ideas for things you could incorporate. Even if you don’t want it as fancy as this one, you can always make it to find her style. I bet you could find a lot of awesome things at thrift stores, etc.

A few other ideas could be:
A luau
A Masquerade Ball theme (though I’m not sure how expensive that’d be)
Greek themed toga party

chyna's avatar

Was just going to suggest @liminal‘s idea. That’s the one I like best. But they are all good ideas.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Any type of giving something back theme would work. Let her and her friends come up with a group or a cause they would like to help out and let them take it from there.

Pandora's avatar

Rent a large cabin over the weekend by a beach. This way it becomes a two day event and you can do some of the themes suggested.

jlm11f's avatar

I second the murder mystery party (those are sooo fun, the only real work would be you having to decide on a story, suspects, characters involved, weapons used and who will be the murderer of course). I also love @chels‘s Alice in wonderland idea. Perfect timing and way more original than a Harry Potter party if you ask me. I know, I have no suggestions of my own, that’s cuz I suck at this too. But I know what makes good parties once I see the ideas.

marinelife's avatar

What about a Twilight-themed party? You could get life-sized cutouts of the main characters and the guests could have pictures taken with them.

They could wear vampire or werewolf costumes.

Trillian's avatar

How community-minded are they? Give them a project and matching t-shirts. Anything involving children, animals, the elderly, or mentally challenged population. Or a neighborhood clean up or fix-it project. Set an arbitrary time limit (two hours or so) and sit back and watch the miracles happen. When they finish they can compare notes and move on the the next phase, food, snacks, presents and music. If they coordinate through one of the local charities they may be able to utilize one of the community buildings, or you could rent a suite in a really nice hotel that has a jacuzzi. Doing for others is its own reward, but recognition is nice too. You could even make up certificates of participation and a name for the group like—- Operation Make-it-Better or something. If you give them their head, I promise you they’ll surprise you pleasantly.
You might start a movement.
My oldest is 26 now, but I remember when she was 16. Sometimes I wanted to pound her into the ground like a tent peg, but she was creative and charitable and did a lot of things for others that involved her time.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

I really need ideas too, I have never held a birthday party before, this May I will be turning 16 on May 19th. I am kind of a shy girl too, I have no idea.
Sorry for asking this question on your questionxD

letsdanceintherain's avatar

oo a murder mystery would be fun! or how about an Amazing Race themed party? My friend just did one of those and we had a ball! you could always go with Survivor… Oh I know! If she’s an avid Gilmore Girl fan, like myself, you could try to set up something like a “life and death brigade”. Try watching the few episodes when Rory is trying to get into that club at Yale with Logan. they do some fun stuff:)

BoBo1946's avatar

lot of creative people running around these days!

Scooby's avatar

Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga, Toga!!! ;-)
How about a Toga party?
Lol.. just some old sheets will do the job just fine…

zephyr826's avatar

My sister and her friends always dress up for their parties. They did a 7 deadly sins night (she was envy and dressed like a “Real Housewife of Orange County”), and they did historical figure bowling once (Paul Revere, Johnny Appleseed, etc.). I think costumes are key.

mollypop51797's avatar

How a bout a theme like black and white. You could set all the lights out, and rent or buy those special lights that make white glow in the dark. Fill is with silver streamers balloons etc. Make it a party!

casheroo's avatar

Let her get that job she wants? ~ lol

WolfFang's avatar

I like @rebbel‘s idea sounds fantastic!

augustlan's avatar

Thanks for all the great answers. She’s decided she’d like to have a murder mystery party! Looking around online, we’re only finding kits that you buy. Does anyone have an idea of where to look for free party plans, or if they’re even available?

eden2eve's avatar

Here

and here

Hope this helps.

augustlan's avatar

She ended up having a Roaring 20s themed murder mystery dinner party, set in a speakeasy. She and all her friends dressed up and played their parts. They looked fabulous and had a great time. Thanks for all the help!

jeanmay's avatar

Yay! Congrats for her birthday and a great party!

chels's avatar

@augustlan Oh my god! That sounds like it was a ton of fun!!! Wonderful :)

eden2eve's avatar

Sorry, I thought the request for free Murder Mystery ideas was a recent post, because it popped up in my “Just For You” section last night.

Glad that she had such a wonderful party, it was great that you were able to help her so much!

jlm11f's avatar

@augustlan That’s all good and well, but where was my invite?

chyna's avatar

@PnL Yeah, I’m still looking for my invite too. It must have got lost in the mail.

shpadoinkle_sue's avatar

Awesome! I’m glad everyone had a great time. :)

The_Idler's avatar

Wow, America seems so odd… you have “murder-mystery” themed, dress-up parties for 16th birthdays!?

We just bought a load of drink and ‘erb, got trashed in the street/park in the middle of the night and played games like we used to when we were kids.

Can you tell our country’s going downhill? õ.O

Don’t get me wrong, we did costume parties, but not unaccompanied by copious amounts of intoxicants of varying degrees of legality.

I guess it says something about growing up, that now all I want to do for a birthday party is laser tag…

jeanmay's avatar

@The_Idler I also don’t recall doing anything special for my sixteenth, but we definitely did for my 18th. I think 18 is more of a thing in the UK, no?

le_inferno's avatar

@The_Idler
Girls are different :P

augustlan's avatar

My kids could not be more different than I was at their ages. Somehow, we’ve managed to keep them fairly innocent! Thank God. ;-)

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